Spiritual Warfare Forum: Fate of damned souls
Fate of damned souls QUESTION from Stelucia August 18, 2001 Dear Bro Ignatius
Thank you for replying to my question regarding annulment.
I have another question to you. What happens with the damned souls, those souls who are written off by exorcists? Father Gabriele Amorth writes in his book An exorcist tells his story that some souls cannot be delivered from evil, no matter how hard the exorcist works.
Many years ago I had a friend who got involved in channelling, influenced by his girlfriend with whom he was much in love. This woman claimed she was channelling the spirit of Vlad the Impaler, the ruling prince who served as model for Bram Stoker’s Dracula. In less than a year, my friend, who was perfectly sane before starting channelling, was diagnosed with schizophrenia. I have no doubts that he was a genuine case of satanic opression and not mentally ill. After being released from hospital, my friend went to a Greek-Orthodox monk, a reputed exorcist, who told him he could not do anything for him but advise to pray and fast. He committed suicide two years afterwards.
If background details seem a bit strange to you, I would add that these things happened in Rumania, the country where Vlad the Impaler has lived and ruled and whose population was (and still is) 89% Greek-Orthodox. In those days, Rumania was a communist country where all Christian churches were persecuted and bizarre and dangerous underground sects flourished.
Now back to my question: what happens with poor souls like my friend’s. Are they eternally condemned to Hell? Is any salvation for them? I read quite a lot of books but none could give a clear answer.
Anyway, his death woke me up. Having closely seen Evil at work, I stopped all my involvement in New Age practices and beliefs and returned to Christian faith by converting to the Roman Catholic faith. As his death prompted my conversion, I still feel a lot of compassion for his soul.
Finally, am I allowed to pray for his souls knowing how and why he died? I mean the usual prayers (Our Father, Hail Mary, De profundis) for departed ones. What else can I do for the salvation of his soul?
Many thanks in advance,
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on August 19, 2001 Dear Mrs. Stelucia:
I praise God that you were inspired to convert. God will richly bless you for that.
As for damned souls? Who told you that people who are demonized or possessed are damned? The damnation of a soul and the demonization of a person have NOTHING to do with the other necessarily. Being possessed DOES NOT automatically mean damned.
As for us knowing who is damned, in fact, we NEVER know who is damned. Only God knows that. We cannot NEVER know if a person is in hell. We don't even know for sure if Hitler is in hell. When a person is damned, however, their eternal fate is hell. But being possessed or committing suicide does NOT make one automatically damned.
There can be many reasons why a person remains demonized even when exorcists have tried their best. Some of those reasons are flaws or strongholds in the person or in the exorcist that allow the demons to remained attached. But another reason can be that God is calling this person to be a victim soul.
We cannot know always know the reasons. We must trust in God and continue to pray for that person.
In suicides, again we do NOT know the eternal fate of that person. Most suicides are mentally unstable and this cannot be held responsible for their actions. The Church teaches that if a person is impaired and is not fully responsible for his actions, then he may not be fully culpable and thus not punished mortally even if he commits a mortal sin. In other words, in these situations of impaired able to be responsible for self, the person may still go to heaven.
We do not know the state of soul of a person who has died from suicide. Thus, yes, pray for them, offer indulgences on their behalf. You may help them to get through purgatory and thereby enter into heaven sooner.
By the way, there are parts of the world that evil seems to have a greater stronghold. Romania is one of those places, Bosnia area is another. We need to be in prayer for that whole area of the world.
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